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Deadlift from Kneeling Position


So i'm looking to improve my hip extension power for sprinting and my friend said to do a 'partial deadlift' where you start with the weight already at knee height and you just lift the top bit. I don't have the ability to set up something like that, so is there any benefit to be derived from doing a deadlift from a kneeling position, and what are the pros and cons of doing this over the regular deadlift?

Thanks guys


If you can, you could dig a hole in the ground about knee height and stand in it and do the DLs that way. If you trained at home. Or if you go to a gym that lets you dig holes in the weight room.
I forgot what powerlifter used to do that in his basement, but he said that's how he got stronger at DLs because they help you with the sticking point.

To me, deadlifting while kneeling sounds dangerous.


thats a fricking stupid idea, but i understand where you are coming from. why not try glute bridges or something similar instead



Just buy blocks of wood to set the bar on, or use the aerobic steps.


you can always just deadlift the weight from the floor and do the top part of the lift for reps. The deadlift is of course lifting the dead-weight off the floor - but repping the upper part of the lift (removing the 'dead-weight' part and using your muscles to stop the descent of the bar) will certainly stress the hip extensors/hamstrings.


Pulling the weight from knee height made sense but not when kneeling. Just wondering - forget about the word "kneeling" - does OP mean rack pull/rack pull deadlift? Because the weight starts from knee height (usually) and it's a partial deadlift.


I'm thinking that it's a rack pull too.


Yeah XB, he is either talking rack pulls of SLDL's I'm guessing


Yeh i've looked into it and it's a rack pull.

I train in my basement so no fancy squat cage to use as a rack. I can put two floor mats under each side but that only gives me an inch. How high do you think I'd need the bar to start from before I could lift significantly more? (by significant i mean 50-60lbs)


I do my rack pulls with the bar right at knee height. Adding 50-60 lbs is gonna be hard, it sort of depends on what you're deadlifting now. If you're deadlifting 150 right now, adding 50 lbs in a rack pull probably won't happen. If you're deadlifting 300, you can probably get 350 out of a rack pull from the knees. You pretty much have to go to at least that height to see a difference, in order to take the bottom half of the movement out.


I did 125kg for 6 last week, which is 275lbs. Is there any difference in technique between rack pulls and stiff leg deadlifts, aside from the fact you can rest the weight at the bottom each rep?


Read pretty much any article here by Bret Contreras.

I don't know how long your limbs are, but if I get down on both knees and grab the bar, there isn't much range for me to actually perform a lift. So no, a kneeling deadlift would be a waste of time.

However, kneeling squats have been used by Westside lifters to improve squat and deadlift strength, and kneeling cleans and kneeling jumps (with and without weight) are used by many coaches to improve explosive hip action. So, this could be something you might want to look into.

The biggest and most obvious difference is the range of motion. Stiff leg deads have a longer range of motion, rack pulls are shortened to whatever height you set the bar. Also, stiff legs will have a bit more muscle activation, because of that added ROM.

As far as resting the weight at the bottom, some people can also do that with stiff leg deads, based on their flexibility and/or arm length, so that's not as significant an issue for everyone.